INLA men’s murders reconstruction

THE murder of two INLA men in Co Louth more than 30 years ago has featured in an RTÉ reconstruction broadcast.

SHOT: Thomas ‘Ta’ Power (left) FEUD: Hugh Torney (right)

Thomas ‘Ta’ Power (33) and then INLA ‘chief of staff’ John GerardO’Reilly (26) were gunned down as they sat in the Rossnaree Hotel, near Drogheda, in January 1987 by members of the Irish People’s Liberation Organisation (IPLO). The INLA men had been in the hotel to try and settle an internal dispute about the direction of the group and were due to meet other members. However, the potential peace summit ended up in bloodshed when gunmen wearing false beards burst into the hotel and opened fire as their victims drank tea.

Two other men were injured during the ambush including Peter Stewart and Hugh ‘cueball’ Torney, who was himself killed in another feud in 1996. Leading IPLO man Gerard Steenson has been linked to the double killing, although others claim he was not involved.

He and another man were shot dead weeks later in March 1987 by the INLA faction in west Belfast. It is understood that the renewed appeal for information comes after relatives of Power, who was from the Markets area of south Belfast, met gardaí recently.

Campaign group Relatives for Justice recently wrote to the Republic’s Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald and Garda commisioner Nóirín O’Sullivan on behalf of the Power family asking for a review of the case. It is beleived that at that meeting family members learned for the first time that three men were questioned after the ambush but later released. No-one has ever been convicted. Gardaí failed to respond to a series of questions put to them by The Irish News about the case.

A reconstruction of the attack was featured on RTÉ’s Crime Call programme on Monday. The broadcaster declined to release any details of the programme in advance. Mike Ritchie from Relatives for Justice said: “Families who have lost loved ones below the border face a difficult situation because they were not able to benefit from the Historical Enquires Team information and review,” he said. “It’s important that the Garda reviews these cases themselves.”

With many thanks to: The Irish News.

http://www.rte.ie/tv/crimecall/this_month.html

http://www.rte.ie/amp/860691/

‘IRA” says it struck police vehicle with EFP (explosively formed projectile).

THE Republican paramilitary group known as the ‘IRA’ last night claimed it was “confident” it struck an RUC/PSNI vehicle with an EFP mortar in Strabane last week.

In a statement the organisation, sometimes referred to as the ‘New IRA’, said it fired the potentially lethal device at the passing patrol car at Townsend Street in the Tyrone town last Tuesday night. The group claims the EFP (explosively formed projectile) mortar contained Semtex and was triggered by command wire and fired from a distance of nine feet at the police vehicle as it passed at around 8pm. The ‘IRA’ claims that the mortar was moved from another location in the border town earlier on Tuesday after the security forces failed to show up.

Using a recognised codeword, the republican group claimed that an attempt to target a police car with the same device at Townsend Street was abandoned an hour before the attack because of the prescence of civillian vehicles in the area. The RUC/PSNI has said that the device, which it described as a “roadside bomb with command wire attached” was “designed to kill or seriously injure” its officers. Three officers who were travelling in the vehicle were uninjured but believed to be left shaken. The RUC/PSNI vehicle left the area after the attack and police were later criticised for failing to cordon off the scenne for three hours.

Several people were removed from their homes during a follow up operation but later allowed to return. Politicians have condemned the latest attack which came just weeks after the ‘IRA’ tried to kill a Catholic police officer in Derry using an undercar bomb. Policing Board member and SDLP MLA Daniel McCrossan said: “Such attacks on the PSNI (RUC) have no place in a modern progressive society.” DUP MLA Tom Buchánan said: “There must be a united and resolute stand from right across the political spectrum to such activities.”

In August 2015, a motar was discovered and disarmed at a cemetery in Strabane after a security operation. EFPs, which can pierce armour over a long distance, have been used by the ‘IRA’ in Derry and Belfast in the past. On those occasions no-one was injured. Unexploded EFPs have also been recovered by the security forces accross the north. Believed to have been developed in Iran, the homemade weapon was regularly used in Iraq. It is considered by some as the modern version of the horizontal mortar – known to republicans as a ‘doodle bug’ – which was used by the Provisionals. Meanwhile, police have been given additional time to question a 20-year-old man arrested in Newtownstewart in connection with the attack last week, while a 31-year-old man arrested on Saturday continued to be questioned last night.

With many thanks to: The Irish News, for the orgional story.

Female Prison officer attacked in Maghaberry Goal

A prison officer is being treated in hospital after being attacked at Maghaberry Prison in Co Antrim.

The woman, who is understood to be one of the newer officers, was taken to hospital after the incident involving a male inmate on Monday.

The prison officer is reported to have suffered a serious neck wound and was taken to the Ulster hospital.

Police have said her condition is not thought to be life-threatening.

It’s understood the woman was attacked with a weapon “made from a razor”.

The incident has been referred to the PSNI.

Adrian Smith from the Prison Officers Association (POA) told the Belfast Telegraph: “The woman has a three-inch gash below her left ear on the neck, it’s a pretty deep wound.

“Anybody knows the difficult and dangerous job that prison officers do and it’s getting more and more dangerous with cuts to prison service budget and staffing levels.

“Unfortunately things like this will happen more often.”

A Prison Service spokesperson said:  “A prison officer has suffered a serious injury following an assault by a prisoner in Maghaberry this afternoon. The Prison Service utterly condemns this attack and has referred the incident to the PSNI.”

Chief Inspector Jonathan Wilson said: “At approximately 5:47 pm this evening police received reports of an incident during which a female prison officer was assaulted.

“The prison officer was taken to hospital where her injuries are not believed to be life-threatening.  Enquiries are ongoing.”

 

PSNI officer who tended to dying Constable Stephen Carroll admits faking documents amid survivor’s guilt – BelfastTelegraph.co.uk

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Former PSNI/RUC officer John Gillespie (33).

A former PSNI/RUC officer who tended to a dying colleague after a dissident republican group CIRA shot him has addmitted faking documents and interviews during an investigation.

http://m.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/psni-officer-who-tended-to-dying-constable-stephen-carroll-admits-faking-documents-amid-survivors-guilt-31287704.html

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Constable Stephen Carroll - PSNI/RUC

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With many thanks to: staff reporter: The Belfast Telegraph.

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